7
   

Should petition signer names be public?

 
 
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:26 am
Quote:
SEATTLE " At a time when voters in many states are using petitions to qualify ballot measures on issues from gay rights to property rights, a legal dispute over the identity of 138,000 petition signers here is raising new questions about privacy, free speech and elections in the Internet age.

On Tuesday, voters in Washington State will decide whether to extend to registered domestic partners the same rights married couples have, short of marriage. But the campaign over the referendum, placed on the ballot by opponents of same-sex marriage, has been overshadowed by one issue: whether the individual names of the petitioners should be made public, and ultimately, circulated on the Web


This is not about the gay rights question, as it is accidental that this issue is tied to the gay rights fight. My first take was that of course this is a public document that should be available to the public, even if it should then be misused by harming those who exercised their citizen rights. Thinking more I decided that it should not be public, for the same reason we hold election by secret ballot...that is the the citizens right to speak must be allowed protection from those who would deny the citizen his speech because they don't like what he has to say. We can't allow militant minorities to silence majorities.

where are you on this important constitutional question?
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:32 am
yes petition names should be available to the public to keep the petition honest

personally i don't get the whole secret ballot thing, i have nothing to hide about who i vote for
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:39 am
@djjd62,
we have public servants whos job it is to protect the process, to check the validity of the names. Do you not trust them and if so should your lack of trust be allowed to skew the democratic process? Allowing fear and intimidation to change the result is an extremely heavy price to pay for your lack of faith in your elected officials.
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:43 am
@hawkeye10,
i could give a flying **** about public servants or having faith in elected officials

i was merely stating that i have no fear of my name being seen on a petition or letting my voting preference be known
parados
 
  3  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:43 am
@hawkeye10,
Except this isn't a secret ballot.
1. The people that sign the petition must be residents and registered to vote.
2. It is required that they prove the above are true.
3. The public should be allowed to double check that the above are true.

Even in voting, voters are not allowed to sign in without doing it publicly and the ballots are not counted in secret. The only thing that is kept secret is once you go in the ballot box. People are not allowed to be secretive about giving money to a candidate why is this any different?

Their names should be revealed to allow the public to confirm that they are valid voters, etc.

0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:46 am
@djjd62,
Quote:
i was merely stating that i have no fear of my name being seen on a petition or letting my voting preference be known


it is likely that you either make it a practice to be always well armed, or else you have never been confronted by a mob who is determined to shut you up.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:48 am
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
Do you not trust them and if so should your lack of trust be allowed to skew the democratic process? Allowing fear and intimidation to change the result is an extremely heavy price to pay for your lack of faith in your elected officials.


I'm sorry but if you want to talk about "skewing the democratic process" then you should be referring to the secretive ability to force an issue on the public without the willingness to be public about it.

Should someone be able to secretly spend billions pushing an issue on the public? I don't think so. Why should someone be able to secretly sign a petition? If they are for a position, shouldn't they be willing to stand up and be counted in a democracy? Shouldn't their position be able to be questioned by others?

Signing a position to get something on the ballot IS a public act that has consequences for the public. It should NOT be allowed to be secret.
parados
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:50 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

Quote:
i was merely stating that i have no fear of my name being seen on a petition or letting my voting preference be known


it is likely that you either make it a practice to be always well armed, or else you have never been confronted by a mob who is determined to shut you up.

ROFLMAO..

Geez.. Is that all you have? That has to be the stupidest argument I have ever seen for not making the names public. How do you propose that this mob will confront them? Why would they need a gun? There are laws in this country hawkeye.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:52 am
@parados,
Quote:
Signing a position to get something on the ballot IS a public act that has consequences for the public. It should NOT be allowed to be secret.


The founders strongly disagreed with you, as there was no major objection to the principle of the secret ballet, they who knew far better than you both the power and the potential harm of the use of might to silence the citizenry.
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 11:59 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

Quote:
i was merely stating that i have no fear of my name being seen on a petition or letting my voting preference be known


it is likely that you either make it a practice to be always well armed, or else you have never been confronted by a mob who is determined to shut you up.


never felt the need to be armed

and i've stared down CAW (Canadian Auto Workers) members and supporters at a former employer when the union tried to get in, making my opposition to them well known

they did get in and i never kept my dislike or opposition to them hidden, i live in a free country
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 12:00 pm
@parados,
Quote:
Geez.. Is that all you have? That has to be the stupidest argument I have ever seen for not making the names public. How do you propose that this mob will confront them? Why would they need a gun? There are laws in this country hawkeye.


those laws did not prevent the silencing of those who objected to our undertaking the misadventure in Iraq. We all pay when a full and fair debate is not allowed to develop, and those who want the names public are the ones who object to this question being put up to a secret ballet vote. I think we know that making the names public will have a chilling effect on going against the wishes of the side that is most vocal and/or most willing to use force to get what they want.

On Iraq the most willing to use force was Bush and the hawks, and they got their way with out much debate or much opposition. How well did that work out for us?
Ceili
 
  3  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 01:44 pm
I have no problem with a secret ballot. If I sign a petition, I assume it is public knowledge. If I don't want my name on the petition I don't sign. I disagree with the practice of selling info after the fact. That should not be allowed.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 01:57 pm
@Ceili,
do you agree with the harassment and/or shunning of those who call for a putting to the vote of questions?? If we know before hand that those who exercise their citizen rights will be harmed due to the act of choosing to exercise their rights do we not have a moral obligation and well as a self interest in protecting the exercise by protecting the privacy of those who call for a vote?
Ceili
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 02:03 pm
@hawkeye10,
I've never been hassled or shunned. As far as I know, this does not seem to be a recurring problem in Canada. If this becomes a problem, I'd probably sign a petition or something....
0 Replies
 
sullyfish6
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 04:30 pm
This petition merely brings the issue to the ballot.

It is not an endorsement or a statement of opposition.

Anyone who puts a spin on this petition is wrong.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 04:48 pm
@hawkeye10,
The Constitution and even the Federalist Papers are silent on "secrecy" of petitions, the right to petition for grievance is slightly different in that it is a guarantee of rights. The framers had nothing to say about secrecy of PETITIONS.

However, e see that the USSC is hearing a case drom Oregon regarding secrecy of identity for those whove signed a state gay rights petition. Apparently , some thug is trying to use the rule that petitions are public record but noones challenged it before apparently.

I would think that the USSC wouldnt overturn the previous rulings

hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 06:00 pm
@farmerman,
I don't think that the framers foresaw that one day those who asked for a sensing of the will of the people would be subject to attack. They were clear, were they not, that when secrecy is required to protect the democratic process that it must be employed. The need for an accurate sensing trumps your right to know what your neighbor thinks.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 06:02 pm
@sullyfish6,
I believe you are mistaken. Since petitions don't have a 'yes' and 'no' position, a signature just has to be taken as an endorsement. You don't suppose that people in opposition to an issue are likely to sign a petition in favor of moving the issure to a vote, do you?
parados
 
  2  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 09:08 pm
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

Quote:
Signing a position to get something on the ballot IS a public act that has consequences for the public. It should NOT be allowed to be secret.


The founders strongly disagreed with you, as there was no major objection to the principle of the secret ballet, they who knew far better than you both the power and the potential harm of the use of might to silence the citizenry.

Signing a petition is NOT a secret ballot. No one would confuse the 2. The courts certainly won't see them as the same thing.

I doubt the founders would have felt there was a reason to petition "secretly". The Declaration of Independence was a petition of grievances and was quite clearly signed in an open manner and the names made public.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Sun 1 Nov, 2009 09:15 pm
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:

Quote:
Geez.. Is that all you have? That has to be the stupidest argument I have ever seen for not making the names public. How do you propose that this mob will confront them? Why would they need a gun? There are laws in this country hawkeye.


those laws did not prevent the silencing of those who objected to our undertaking the misadventure in Iraq.
The protesters were silenced? I seem to recall a lot of public protests and those protesting weren't threatened by mobs or required to protect themselves with guns.
Quote:
We all pay when a full and fair debate is not allowed to develop, and those who want the names public are the ones who object to this question being put up to a secret ballet vote.
What is your point? The debate can certainly happen without it being on the ballot.

Quote:
I think we know that making the names public will have a chilling effect on going against the wishes of the side that is most vocal and/or most willing to use force to get what they want.
You might think you "know" that but it doesn't make it a fact or even make it likely. Someone using force would be a violation of the law and it tends to have the opposite effect when it comes to support. People tend to NOT support a minority that uses force to make people think like they do.
Quote:

On Iraq the most willing to use force was Bush and the hawks, and they got their way with out much debate or much opposition. How well did that work out for us?
The issue was whether to use force or not in Iraq. There was no "force" used against those that were opposed to going into Iraq. Your arguments don't even make any sense. While certainly the people opposed to Iraq were threatened by some lunatics on the right, there was no chilling effect on the opposition since they continued to oppose it.
 

Related Topics

BBB gets the message - Discussion by BumbleBeeBoogie
Thumbing up and down: Abuse already? - Question by littlek
The 'I voted' thread! - Question by Cycloptichorn
Let's get rid of the Electoral College - Discussion by Robert Gentel
The Problem with Thumbs up...or Down - Discussion by Bella Dea
Is lying to protect yourself ok with God? - Question by missmusical
Franken is Challenging This Vote - Discussion by cjhsa
US Voters: Tell us, how was it? - Discussion by Joe Nation
 
  1. Forums
  2. » Should petition signer names be public?
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 09/27/2020 at 05:11:57